WALK FROM AUSTREY TO WARTON by Mike Smith
By combining a bus trip with a stroll, linear walks are possible. Why not use the "Arriva" bus service that serves our villages?
Penny and I decided to walk from Austrey to Warton and return by bus. As we had to use the bus from Shuttington our time for the walk was limited by the arrival time in Austrey as well as the departure time from Warton. Our bus reached Austrey at 10.15am and we easily caught the 11.44am back from Warton.
It was a very pleasant misty Autumn day when we did the walk, with a heavy dew still on the ground. The grass in the fields was quite long and our feet got very wet. We wished we had worn ‘wellingtons’! There were heaps of blackberries in the hedges.
Start from Austrey church. Walk through the church yard to the far right hand corner to a wooden ‘kissing gate’.
An open pasture is ahead. Bear left to skirt a pond with trees and keep bearing left to the corner of the field and head for a white metal gate where there is a stile.
Over two stiles into a field, which has been planted with poplar trees. A well trodden path across the field to a road. We felt that a few ‘way markers’ would help strangers to find their way across these fields!
Turn right along the road for about 50 metres to a track on the left with a metal farm gate set back from the road. Over the stile next to the gate and over a second stile shortly afterwards. Still no ‘way markers’!
Continue on the same heading with a low hedge and stream to your left and a high hedge running parallel to the route on the right.
After the high hedge finishes, look for a stile through a hedge on your right. The area is made up of well-hedged small fields and it is quite difficult to see exactly where you are. Walk alongside the left hand hedge and climb over three more stiles.
Look carefully for a stile going through the left hand hedge. If you miss it you will come across a ditch and crude barbed wire fence. Go over the stile and turn right to see yet another stile which is a little away from the field corner, and climb over that.
Keep on the same heading over the middle of the next field. A ‘way-marker’ can be seen on a stile in the far hedge. Climb another stile!
Straight ahead find a footbridge over a stream, and then across a second footbridge on a bearing slightly to the left. Neither of the bridges are marked and are not immediately obvious to see.
Across the next field. It had just been ploughed on our visit and was rather a slog! Head for a hedge corner with a lone tree nearby.
The houses of Warton are now in view. Keep on the same heading and walk with the hedge on your right. Come to a metal ‘kissing gate’ well hidden in the hedge corner. You need not climb over this!!
Proceed along the path between the house gardens onto the main road. Turn left along the road and walk towards the centre of Warton. The bus stop is just past the shop, where a bar of chocolate may be purchased.